Saturday, April 30, 2011

What happens when you leave an 19month alone for 2 minutes.....

I'm sure that everyone remembers the Gorgeous Marshmallow rabbit my parents gave the kids for Easter....
if not, here's a reminder shot...

Now, THIS is what happens when you go to the Laundry to put a load of washing on, naively thinking that your 19month old toddler is happily playing with his crayons and paper...

Bye Bye Bunny!!

Friday, April 29, 2011

The Fairies

Yep, The Fairies! We're Pink'ed here, much to my stress.
But, one of the ones I don't really mind is The Fairies.
And for these school holidays, The Fairies (where A had her 5th birthday party)
were here visiting so off went DragonPapa and A. She was SO excited!!

Now, I usually edit out my little ones faces for security,
but I seriously couldn't edit out the look of bliss on A's face as she hugged her Favorite Fairie!!

And to top it off, they even signed her favorite handbag...

 A Lovely Day!! Thank you to The Fairies!!

Blocks of Fun

Well, I didn't get  much this week at the Rummage Sale, due to the fact that we have no money - LOL. But I still went and helped out!

I still got a great bargain though ...

2 large boxes of wooden blocks!!!

And I also managed to grab this tupperware dip tray. Thinking of using this for A's planting - ie. Mung Beans/Bird seed/etc.

Looking forward to next week, as usual!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

From Our Front Yard

Not So Pricey

Why spend hundreds of dollars on plastic fantastic toys, when a few meters of marked down fabric work even better??

Easter Fun Weekend

We asked that the families not give the kids chocolate this year, as A has reactions (behavioural) and P is too young, so my parents gave us the most gorgeous marshmallow rabbit - looks just like our real life babies!!
Yummy too!!

A and P playing on the couch. A was spinning around and then 'boo'ing at P and he was giggling his little heart out! Makes you all googy inside to watch!

A and DragonPapa playing with some new jigsaw cards we picked up at our Rummage Sale - a bit of Home schooling there as well as Daddy time and fun

More Daddy Time

Even P got in on the act!

Making some chocolates for Easter with the Kids. One of the kids is lactose-intolerant, so this way, they all get the same and no-one misses out. Also great home schooling.

 And to finish off the day, playing outside.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

On My Soap Box - Abandoned Houses

I know, what a weird post for Easter - well, I have heaps to blog about due to my splitting everything up now into their own sections, I thought I would do this one while it was fresh in my mind!

We went for a lovely drive after Good Friday church yesterday - something we do quite often, especially when the kids are asleep in the car.

Something we see quite often is abandoned houses in our drive through the SA countryside. Some are by themselves, others are right next to the newly built homes, some in the middle of no-where, but all seemly abandoned. Some are more obvious than others - lol!

I would never presume to know why they are no longer lived in and loved - too many reasons in todays society.

But what does tick off the DragonMumma is the fact they are empty. We have families living in cars and couch-surfing, we have share-houses that are bursting at the seams and being charged like wounded bulls for the privilege. There are people living on the streets who would do anything to have a secure roof over their heads.

So why are these places empty? Is it the remoteness? Is it the fact that many of these houses require fixing up? (some more than others! rofl)

Is it that they have no 'modern' amenities like power and running water? Is it that they are too small or too old?
Or is it because their owners can't be found? Or don't care? Or don't want the hassle of having people in there? Is it legal? Are there danger issues?

I have so many questions!! Yet no-one really has a definite answer. Because there isn't just ONE answer.

One of the houses looked like it was straight out of Ireland or Wales - stone cottage with stone outbuildings and even a stone wall surrounding it! In the middle of a sheep field, to me, it looked like Heaven!!

Others we see are simply modern houses that the owners have used until their McMansions were built and now sit there empty, awaiting...... who knows! Demolition? Age? Money?

There was a movie I watched as a child starring Kathy Bates, where she played a single mother who went out, found an almost abandoned house, bought it (sort of) and with hard work, they fixed it up into a home. They learnt the skills they needed and got the job done.

A Home Of Our Own

So why aren't Aussie families doing this?? Is it that we have lost our knowledge? Is it that we have forgotten the Pioneer spirit? Are we SO comfortable now in our City homes with our modern conveniences that we are no longer able to cope with anything less? Are people so caught up in their own struggles and world that seeing outside that life is too hard? Are we no longer the country that looks out for others? I'm not talking the mass disasters we have had lately - they tugged at all our hearts - I mean the day to day stuff, the slog that we all go through.

I know of many people who HAVE chosen this life, but they had the funds to do it. There are others who would, but lack the funds to buy the property at the start -

One of my friends, a single dad with 2 kids, once approached a farmowner about his abandoned house in the middle of one of his fields. My friend was living in his car until they moved in with me, but he wanted his own place, somewhere he wouldn't have the fear of being turfed out when he couldn't afford the massive rent increases.
The Owner told him that the house hadn't been lived in for over a decade - his parents built the house themselves, raised 7 kids in a two bedroom house and then passed away in their beloved home. But by the time everything was sorted out, the house required too much work to be habitable (to 'today's standards' mind you), the now adults all had their own places and no-one wanted to live in a rural setting - only 1.5 hours from the Major Capital City for that State mind you, not the local town! (which was only a short drive away)

But the answer to my friends request to live there? No. Too hard, too much work, didn't want tenants. When my friend offered a deal (similar to Kathy Bates Character) it was a tentative agreement. My friend was so excited! He spent weeks fixing it up for his girls, making it as habitable as he could after 12 years of neglect.

It had no mains power, no mains water, but it was weather and critter proof - lol - He had worked very hard.
Two weeks in there, the girls had settled down, they were going along great, but some 'concerned' citizen - who apparently couldn't BEAR the fact that someone had kids in a house with no mains power - called Child Services and my friend was told to find 'other' accommodation. Apparently living in your car in the City is borderline acceptable, living in a house with no mains power is a massive no-no!

Well, between us-his friends - and the farmer - who was extremely impressed with such a hardworking, upstanding young man and father - and some other warm hearted people, we got him some second hand solar panels (this was over 15 years ago - NOT easy to find!! lol ) and the farmer even dipped into his own lean pocket and bought a years supply of water, had it trucked in and even gave my friend a nearly brand new water tank to store it in!

That was enough to get the Child Services off his back, but has always left a nasty taste in my mouth.

But back on track - this that another reason why people don't do it? The fear of losing our kids?

All I see is a place that is empty, that needn't be. I liked a Council in England's take on this. If its derelict for too long, they take it or force the owners to relinquish it, and give it to someone who wants somewhere for themselves and their families.

Can we get something like that here?

I for one, eye these homes off with envy and sadness and a little bit of anger. Yes, this post is about me - after all, 'I'm On My Soap Box' - I would love to have my own house, and that is something that may or may not happen, but I am also sad for the houses. Every house needs a family.
Otherwise, they can't be called home!

** Important Note!! I nicked these pictures off the 'Net, if you see yours, let me know so I can credit you or remove **

Happy Easter BlogWorld!



Sunday, April 17, 2011

Saturday Bliss

Well, to start off, I totally forgot my camera yesterday and felt completely naked the whole day!! :( So a post with no pictures is a rarity for me, but I wanted to jot this down so that I would remember it for our home schooling registration when the time comes.

My best friend and I decided that as her youngest is now going to school and NOT homeschooling, thanks to her ex *scowly face* and he starts at the end of these school holidays, it was a great chance for us to get together for a good decent day.

We packed a picnic and swapped car seats around and headed off to a new playground I had seen in our travels. If anyone wants a great playground, check out the new/refurbished one on Beach Rd at Christies Beach! Its beautiful!! Lush green grassed playing field, then a fabulous playground - with that spongy flooring and climbing walls and wobbly boats and a nice big parent-scaring spider web!! It was great to see something put up that inspires kids to be adventurous and lets hope some stupid parent doesn't bitch that their precious little cotton-wool wrapped glass child might slip and graze their knee and have it taken down!! Then, across the road the beach for those that like that sort of thing - LOL!

It also has Heaps of undercover tables - * 4 * all scatted around the playing areas, a BBQ and toilets are a short 2 minute walk to the beach front.

We had our sandwiches and played (and J and I got REALLY hungry at the smell of others Hot Chips HAHAHA) and it was lovely!! All three kids - A, P and J - had a blast! I got some photos on my camera, but still have no idea how to get them OFF my camera yet!!

It was the perfect day for a playground day - sunny and bright, but not hot but nice and cool on hot sweaty skin!!

We then headed off to do a little shopping and got the kids involved in money and numbers and quantities and weights and temperature and dates!

While we were in the car, Little P got a bit grumpy at the wait, so A, P and J played a game where they lifted their legs in the air and screamed! They did it for aaaaaaggggggeeeeeesssss, I couldn't stop laughing!! And they timed it perfectly! Both A and J waited for P to lead the way -Follow The Leader style. It was gorgeous!!

The best bit (and here's where I think I might be a bit evil - heehee) was the looks on the faces of horrified adults as they walked past or got in their cars next to us. I mean - how DARE we 'allow' children to scream and kick!! Pfft - go soak your heads in a bucket you grumpy old sourpusses!!

By the time we got home, all three kids were exhausted!! We had been out for about 7 hours of fun, sun, maths, shopping, socialization, exercise, leadership, negotiation, you name it!!

Bathed and J & J on their way home, my two tucked up in their beds and asleep in 3 minutes - perfect end to the perfect day!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Rummage Sale Day

Here are my more 'bloggable' finds from today's Rummage Sale...

When we arrived, T came racing up to me and thrust this bag in my hands then explained that she had found and kept aside them for me. What were they....

11 terry toweling nappies and 2 cotton nappies. YAY!!

Then a little hand carved doe for my African wood scene..

And when I say little...


Then, something my 18month old son found while sitting in his stroller....

A SPIDER CATCHER!!!  As readers of EB will know, I have an 'interesting' relationship with the spiders in this house. Now, I don't have to worry!!

Some books by Louisa May Alcott

Under the Lilacs
Eight Cousins
Jack and Jill
Little Men

**excuse the camera strap - lol**

Then my find of the WEEK!!

White Satin!! A ROLL of white wedding dress satin!! I can't believe someone didn't snatch this up!!
I'm planning to make this into outfits for A, P and DragonPapa!!

Then, last but not least, a collection of Stacking Cups! A was very impressed with this, we spent the evening youtubing videos on Cup Stacking

See ya Next Week

Another tooth gone!!

A lost her second tooth late last night! A bit too late for the Tooth Fairy (heehee) but she was so excited!!

Tuesday is Dad Day

Monday is our scheduled Home Schooling day, if a natural learner has such a thing. Basically, its our Day Home, so we focus on more 'teaching' things.

So Slime was the name of the game today. Unfortunately, I can't seem to make slime, more foam - we use Lux Soap Flakes - but A loves it. We went for a Rainbow Theme this week.

We also worked on time, clocks and fractions.

Earlier on in the week, we made paper flowers. I picked up a kit at the Rummage Sale and it still had all its papers and cutouts and even the pipe-cleaner stems!!

Tuesday is Dad Day. After my Rummage Sale, we tend to do things with Dad. Hubby has recently started painting, and the kids have followed with gusto...

Clean up bubba style

We then moved on to paper-mache. We picked up a horse from Spotlight on the VIP special (If you are a fabric lover or craft lover, I highly recommend getting the VIP card!!) and some paper serviettes along with a HUGE tub of glue.